I have run into a problem when sharing my poetry, and I wonder if it happens to other people.
I recently handed over a little poem that I threw together, and the person immediately suspected it was written with a certain other person in mind. Even though, in my eyes, there was very little resemblance, he was convinced.
When I write poetry, it often starts out with a feeling, a snippet of a conversation, or an image that gets stuck in my head. In that way, it comes from reality. Beyond that, I try to embellish it. I add fictional details, emotions that were not necessarily a part of the initial idea.
I have since added a disclaimer before I share any of my writing. For example, the poem I am about to share with you is completely fictional. I think I have only ever tried moonshine once. I was with my husband, sitting at my mother’s kitchen table.
We confess things in the lamp light
After midnight and a few drinks.
Discovering each other through memories
Rendered hazy over months and years.
We share secrets, lowering our voices
When we get to the juiciest parts,
Divulging the heartaches and mistakes.
We are damaged but interesting.
I trace one of his scars with my fingertips,
As I notice my own cracked cuticles.
Our bodies are not flawless lying here,
But we are perfection to each other.
I know this moment will fade like the rest.
In a year or two, I will call up this memory,
And I will forget the color of the sheets,
Specific words, the flavor of the moonshine.
But I will remember this feeling,
The longing to make this last past sunrise.
If only our courage and desire could withstand
The intrusion of the bright white sun.